UWI Vice-Chancellor Sir Hilary Beckles says the Biden/Harris victory is also “a win” for the Caribbean.
He was speaking at a virtual media conference on Thursday afternoon under the theme Caricom, the UWI, Biden and the Future of Our Voice.
Joe Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris were called as winners of the US presidential election on November 7 with an estimated 279 electoral college votes over President Donald Trump’s 214. Harris is of Indian and Jamaican descent.
Beckles said everyone ought to “read this circumstance carefully.
“Let us speak of the affirmation of democracy in the first place. Let us speak of how the people in St Vincent and the Grenadines have reaffirmed their commitment to a progressive path in the re-election of Prime Minister (Dr Ralph) Gonsalves. That is a community that has read its circumstance and has taken some very clear, strategic decisions.
“Let us look at what has happened with the reaffirmation of Prime Minister (Dr Keith) Rowley; the reaffirmation in the Eastern Caribbean: Prime Minister (Keith) Mitchell,
Prime Minister (Timothy) Harris, Prime Minister (Ricky) Skerritt. Let’s look at even what happened in Barbados. This Caribbean, democratic affirmation is certainly one of the forces of energy that has driven the US democratic ritual of rising above Trumpism. We have to get that.”
He said Caribbean leaders in North America have helped shape their views by “reading into the minds of Caricom leaders.”
While the US wants to focus on rebuilding its “blue wall,” he said it is also “a black and brown wall.
“We, the people of the Caribbean, were absolutely, tremendously involved in rebuilding the black and the brown wall that has given rise to this circumstance. So the Biden victory; the Democratic victory, is also a Caribbean victory.”
He said Biden wrote to him in 2019, saying the spirit of UWI is felt by the Democratic Party.
The letter said, Beckles quoted, “We give thanks to you for standing for education so that the Caribbean people have a deep commitment to education. They have carried that commitment to the US; they have used that commitment to go all the way to the top.”